The very lovely Philip Ardagh

When we met yesterday I had a lot of fun with Philip Ardagh. So it’s not just reading his books. He is a particularly nice man. And funny.

Philip seemed surprisingly intrigued by this idiot who started reading Eddie Dickens at the wrong end, and who is then blundering about the books in a totally haphazard order. The current one I’m on has a large amount of snow in it, and it felt quite un-British. Turns out Philip wrote Terrible Times in Stockholm, which makes much more sense. Swedish snow. That’s more like it.

Philip’s way with children is fantastic and is only equalled by his way with adults. I lead a very boring life, and it was a long time since I grinned so much in one day. I’ve never had any deeper thoughts on second hand underwear or stuffed stoats, but I can see how relevant they are. And funny.

Philip delivered the, to my mind, best Philip Pullman quote/observation for Son’s benefit to date. Interesting that both the Philips are Moomin fans. They can come and watch our original language videos any time. Though, I do wonder how Philip P could make out a Moomin tie, any tie, behind all that beard?

He is seriously cool, too, having a past travelling on trains in Sussex with Keane, who only spoke to him because he has written a book with Paul McCartney.

Philip Ardagh

Philip has other books, apart from the two Eddie Dickens trilogies, which incidentally sold like hot cakes yesterday. There’s a funny one where somebody dies on page one. Just what parents want for their young.

And Philip writes his own amusing comments on Victorian magazine pictures. One of his other favourites is the Japanese translation of his book on hieroglyphics. I don’t read as many fact books as I perhaps should, but Philip’s ones look so tempting. And one of them even has a Pullman quote on the back. Unfortunately the publishers had put it on the wrong book.

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